Girls, preschoolers added to fence painting contests

From the first mud volleyball practices at 5 p.m. today, June 28, on Hill Street until the fireworks display over the Mississippi River on the Fourth of July, the Hannibal Jaycees offer seven days of entertainment for preschoolers through senior adults at National Tom Sawyer Days.

The fence painting — one main NTSD event — will add two new contests this year: for girls ages 10 to 13, and a peewee contest for ages 5 to 9. No advance registration is needed for any fence painting, and contestants are judged on costume, speed and painting quality.

The local fence painting contest will begin at 2 p.m. Saturday at Main and Hill streets, followed by the state and “over 30” events. On Sunday the peewee and girls’ fence painting will begin at 1 p.m., followed by the national contest at 2 p.m. Registration for fence painting contests begins at 12:30 p.m. both days.

The Fourth of July schedule includes the parade at 10 a.m., followed by announcement of the new Tom and Becky at noon in Central Park. The fireworks are scheduled at 9 p.m. (dusk).

The parade theme is America. The entry fee is $10 and the lineup begins at 9 a.m. For details, contact Jamie Bergheger at 573-822-4591.

Today is opening day for the carnival on Lyon Street, which is scheduled from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and will open earlier beginning Friday. It will be open through July 4.

Friday’s schedule includes the pet show in Central Park at noon.

Also Friday, Tanyard Gardens opens at 5 p.m., where three bands will play beginning at 7:30 p.m. Bands also will perform in Tanyard Gardens on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

The schedule of events will be published in the Courier-Post and also is on

The popular Hannibal Cannibal race begins at 7 a.m. Saturday at Main and North streets, after registration at 5:30 a.m. (The packet pickup is scheduled Friday from 2:30 to 7 p.m. at North and Main.

Saturday events include the baby contest and Little Mr. and Miss Hannibal at 9 a.m. at Hannibal Middle School, the frog jump at 10 a.m. at Church and Third streets, the Tomboy Sawyer contest at 11 a.m. at the old bridge approach and several contests for adults.

On Sunday, Monday and Tuesday the arts and crafts festival in Central Park will open at 9 a.m., closing at 6 p.m. Sunday and Monday and at 4 p.m. on July 4, after a raffle drawing.

Monday’s contests include tricycle races at 1 p.m. at Third and Church streets, after registration at 12:30 p.m.

Kami and Chris Harsell, along with Jeff Veach, are NTSD event chairmen. “We have been working on it since January,” said Kami.

“The Jaycees are excited to bring the Hannibal community the 62nd annual Tom Sawyer Days,” Kami said. “We would like to thank the area businesses and other organizations for their continued support over the last 62 years. Without the help of our sponsors, we wouldn’t have made it this far.”

Reach reporter Bev Darr at